Houston's Top 10 Crawfish Joints
Note: This post is from 2011. Please check out our current list (with current prices) for 2012.
Photo by Tony Chen You must make the crawfish do a puppet dance for your amusement before eating it. Fact.
Yesterday, we showed you the proper way to eat crawfish. Today, armed with that knowledge, we're going to show you the best places to eat them in Houston.
It may not officially be crawfish season yet -- Exhibit A: Danton's, my go-to for serious Cajun food, isn't stocking them. Exhibit B: neither is BB's Cajun Cafe or Goode Co. Seafood. And it won't be until at least the end of the month, if not next month.
But the fact that it isn't technically crawfish season hasn't prevented nearly every bar and Cajun restaurant in town from offering mudbugs by the pound. After all, this weather is practically built for crawfish consumption. And here's how you can tell...
Of those restaurants that currently are offering crawfish by the pound, the people who answer the phones nearly tell you the price of the crawfish right when they pick up. At Mardi Gras Grill, there's a robot -- a robot! (okay, so it's a recorded, robot-sounding message) -- that answers the phone and automatically relays the current per-pound price of the bugs. Local foodie extraordinaire Jenny Wang even has a "Crawfish Specials" list set up on Twitter.
Crawfish: Serious business.
The closest to an authentic po-boy as you'll get in the Bayou City also has great crawfish, and for a great price: only $5.49 a pound right now. It also consistently pulls in some of the largest, so come prepared.
This longtime Richmond haunt is where many Houstonians -- native or not -- tried their first crawfish. While there's usually a line out the door during crawfish season, that's just a sign of loyalty and quality. Ragin' Cajun gets bonus points for its wild Louisiana decor, fabulous zydeco music, handy sink right in the dining room, and the fact that it doesn't charge extra for corn or potatoes. It sells its crawfish in 1.75 pound or 3.5 pound buckets, and market price is currently $6.28 a pound.
According to the robo-voice, the bugs at this Durham favorite are currently $5.99 a pound, and its low prices combined with a central location means that this Cajun shack gets swamped early and often. But it also comes with a great backstory: This was the original Floyd's -- Floyd Landry, that is -- and was one of the first places to bring crawfish to Houston.
Speaking of... This location of Floyd's is our favorite, with a boat-shaped bar and all-you-can-eat crawfish specials that will keep you lingering all day in sea-breezy Webster, whether you meant to or not. Right now, crawfish is $5.95 a pound.